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Van driver groped woman, exposed self to jogger: Authorities

SAN DIEGO -- Authorities Wednesday were on the lookout for a man who forcibly fondled one woman and exposed himself to another in North County neighborhoods over the last four days.

The unidentified perpetrator was standing next to a van in the 4000 block of Vista de la Tierra in Solana Beach when he grabbed a passing female pedestrian's buttocks on Saturday, sheriff's officials reported.

Two days later, the man repeatedly drove past a jogger in the same type of vehicle in the 17000 block of El Vuelo in Rancho Santa Fe, then pulled to a stop and exposed himself to her, according to investigators.

"The jogger was able to run across the street as the (perpetrator) stepped out of the van with his pants down to his knees," Lt. Karen Stubkjaer said.

Detectives believe the same man --  described as a clean-shaven, black-haired Latino in his 20s or early 30 -- is responsible for both crimes and may have victimized other women in similar fashion. The vehicle associated with him in both cases is a newer-model white delivery-style van with no side windows.

Anyone with information about the crimes or similar ones that have yet to be reported was asked to call the sheriff's Sexual Assault Unit at 858-974- 2316.